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Arkansas State Medical Board

Posted on Thursday, November 20, 2014    

When a complaint regarding malpractice or medical error comes before the Arkansas State Medical Board, the Board must find more than just medical negligence in order to hold a doctor accountable. According to the Arkansas Model Jury Instructions, medical malpractice, also known as medical negligence is defined as follows: “In diagnosing the condition of a patient, a physician must possess and apply with reasonable care the degree of skill and learning ordinarily possessed and used by members of his profession in good standing, engaged in the same specialty in the locality in which he practices, or in a similar locality. A failure to meet this standard is negligence.”

Negligence is simply the violation of patient safety rules. Medical negligence occurs when a doctor fails to diagnose a patient properly, to provide appropriate treatment, to read test results, to prescribe medicine properly, to give proper care during surgery, or to monitor a patient adequately.

The Arkansas State Medical Board is charged by the General Assembly to protect the health, safety, and welfare of the People of the State of Arkansas with the goal that all citizens are provided with the highest quality health care possible. The State Medical Board has the authority to discipline a doctor if his or her actions violate the Medical Practice Acts or violate the rules and regulations of the Board. However, the only scenario where the State Board will enforce disciplinary actions is if the accused physician acted in a grossly negligent or reckless manner.

For example, if a physician misdiagnoses a patient and they suddenly die, the doctor will not be punished by the State Medical Board because he or she did not act in a grossly negligent manner or in a careless manner. In a recent hearing earlier this month, the State Medical Board found that a physician’s actions of failing to readmit a patient to the hospital was a medical error but was not a “terrible” negligence, so the physician was not held accountable.

At McCutchen Buckley–The Law Firm, we understand how difficult it is for victims or families of victims who have suffered from medical negligence to receive the justice they deserve. With over thirty years of experience in the Fort Smith area, we have extensive knowledge on all types of medical malpractice cases. Contact an experienced personal injury attorney at McCutchen Buckley-The Law Firm if you feel you have been injured as a result of medical negligence. Call toll free at 1-(800)-871-0036, locally at (479)-783-0036 or by email jmccutchen@mccutchenlawfirm.com.